Social video app TikTok from China-based Bytedefence has now been removed from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store in India. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology had ordered Google and Apple to do so after the Madras High Court banned the app in India.
The popular app, which is used by teenagers for creation and sharing of short videos was available on application stores of both Google and Apple until Tuesday evening but is no longer available for downloads on both platforms.
The move by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) comes after the Supreme Court on Monday refused to stay an earlier order by the Madras High Court to ban the app. The ruling by the Madras High Court comes after hearing a petition by senior advocate S Muthukumar. The petition said that children using the app were vulnerable to exposure by sexual predators.
The matter is now posted for hearing on April 22nd in the Supreme Court while the next hearing at the Madras High Court is on 24th April. As the app has been removed from both the platforms, people won’t be able to download the application. However, those who already have the app installed on the phone will be able to continue using it on their device.
ByteDance said that it cannot be held liable for actions of third parties on the platform. The app was like any other social media platform, it said, adding that singling out TikTok was discriminatory and arbitrary. However, the company didn’t comment on MeitY’s direction to Apple and Google for removing the app.